It’s hard to pinpoint just one reason to love the onion!
Eating onions gives more to our lives than simply flavor to our food. Incorporating onions into our diet can alter the course of major disease, such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and most forms of cancer. Beneficially effecting a staggering multitude of other diseases and disorders including cataracts, cardiovascular disease as well as cancer of the breast, colon, ovarian, gastric, lung, and bladder while helping to reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease and stroke. You can see that the onion is mighty, in deed!
The richest dietary source of quercitin, onion holds a powerful antioxidant flavonoid that has been shown to thin the blood, lower cholesterol, ward off blood clots, and fight asthma, chronic bronchitis, hay fever, diabetes, atherosclerosis and infections. Onions antioxidants and amino acids allow your body to function optimally, help prevent damage and are used in virtually every vital function in the body. Oh that’s all? No, there’s more.
“Onions are excellent at killing cancer cells.” Published recently in Food Research International, “Onions activate pathways that encourage cancer cells to undergo cell death. They promote an unfavorable environment for cancer cells and inhibit growth by disrupting communication between cancer cells.”
“Altering dietary habits may be a practical and cost-effective means of reducing cancer risk and modifying tumor behavior. Approximately 30–40% of cancers are preventable by appropriate food and nutrition, physical activity, and maintenance of healthy body weight.” Said in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health research article: ‘Garlic and onions: Their cancer prevention properties’ published in 2015. Summarizing that, “Mechanistic studies provide compelling evidence that garlic, onions, and their (stinky) sulfur components alter the biological behavior of tumors, tumor microenvironments, or precancerous cells, and decrease cancer risk.”
Do you smell breakthrough? Onions pungent smelling sulfur compounds are actually a powerful detox element which help the body to release toxins, especially from the liver. Foods naturally high in sulfur also help the body detox itself of heavy metals and other dangerous toxins. Damage to DNA caused by environmental toxins is thought to be the cause of most cancer. Eating organic, local sustainable food never sounded better!
“Organic conditions boost flavonoids and antioxidant activity in onions” said the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry in a study published on June 14, 2017. They went on to say, “organic foods contain more health-benefiting phytochemicals.” Now, researchers have found that flavonoid levels and antioxidant activity in organic onions are higher than in conventional onions. Their investigation, in ACS’ Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, is the longest-running study to address the issue.
An organic onion a day? A study conducted at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle found that eating a teaspoon of fresh garlic and a half cup of onions per day increases the levels of a key enzyme for removing toxins in the blood cells. As told by FOX News, “eating onions can get your blood sugar-and your weight-on the right track. So here is a simple, powerful health-enhancing recommendation: Eat an onion every day. One medium-sized onion equals approximately one cup of onion when chopped.”
In addition, other factors including the gut microbiome, may also influence responses, giving last weeks blog post about gut-boosting Okra something more to think about.
You see, organic onions are an essential ingredient, to the flavor of wellness through-out our life. The taste of a good life, absent from disease is the most savored quality offered up in the onion. So next time you start to cry over an onion, let them be tears of joy! Breakthrough is yours.
“It’s hard to imagine civilization without onions.”
— Julia Child
Acorn Squash with Onions and Yogurt
- 1 acorn squash, halved, seeded and cut into 8 wedges
- 1 medium onion, cut into 8 wedges
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- ½ cup Aris plain sheep’s milk yogurt
- 2 teaspoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
- ¼ cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
- Preheat over to 375. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss squash and onion with oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast until squash is tender, 30-35 minutes.
- In a small bowl, combine yogurt and lemon juice. Transfer squash and onion to a serving plate. Top with yogurt and mint.
- Serve with a refreshing glass of mint green tea or lemon water..
Give thanks… and enjoy!
Onion Preparation & Storage TIPS:
Onions are healthy raw & cooked, though raw onions have higher levels of organic sulfur compounds that provide many benefits, according to the BBC. A 2005 study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that there is a high concentration of flavonoids in the outer layers of onion flesh, so you’ll want to be careful to remove as little of the edible part of the onion as possible when peeling it. Never microwave your antioxidant-rich foods since the process decreases the antioxidant content by more than 75% in just one minute.
Best not to leave an onion cut open in the fridge because it will absorb bacteria. Either use the whole onion, or buy a variety of small, medium and large onions to have on hand; and use accordingly. Sage Mountain Farm CSA box shares typically include a variety of sizes in a season, seeing to it that in my kitchen, an onion never goes to waste. However, once an onion is in a salad in a sealed container, it is safe and can be eaten at a later time.
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